Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Game in Space

Game Proposal


Game Type: MMORPG

Summary: Space Vehicles mines Helium 3, simulate low gravity environments while transporting materials / take off / landing.

Creating a game that would be both academically stimulating while capturing the imagination (and interest) of adolescents is not an easy task. Not only does it require a “fun” game, it also requires a lengthy amount of research as well as timing.

At this particular point in time, I would choose to create a space game. Not only would it raise awareness of our nation's stagnating, inefficient, poorly funded space program, it would raise interest in the subject and potentially create future replacements for the aging ranks within NASA.

This game would be an MMORPG (hopefully funded like the government-- like Army Operations), and would focus around the economic repercussions of fossil fuels and the search for alternative sources of energy. An integral part of the game will be harvest Helium-3, Deuterium, and other fusion-able resources commonly found in our galaxy. While the game begins somewhat a hundred years in the remote future, the player begins his journey 200 miles above the earth's surface in one of the many space stations orbiting the earth. Real-Life physics will be an important part of the game. While it is understood that if accurate real-life physics would make space travel time consuming and near unplayable, it would be my intention to the make the game as accurate as possible, while making it still playable. This would mean tweaking the physics so that perhaps scale is slightly adjusted for better interaction and travel, while interaction between players and objects, etc was still realistic. Here's an example: A player travels halfway around the earth while in orbit to a debris field to clean up debris. Realistically, it would take the player possibly half an hour to an hour to arrive at his location. In game, to maintain player interest, the travel would have to take at most 5-10 minutes. When the player arrives at the debris field, interaction with debris should be realistic. If the player is traveling too fast, the debris should destroy his ship. Additionally, if he/she bumps into the debris, it should bump / shatter in a realistic fashion, and possible cause a chain reaction (kessler syndrome?).

The main theme in this game will be exploration and teamwork. Online communities are what power MMORPGs and so naturally great emphasis would be put in building that community. “Missions” given (generically known as quests) would require players to team up with other players, perhaps performing docking maneuvers, pooling resources together to to get to a location, etc. Combat could be introduced as an additional incentive, although it would need to be as realistic as possible (civilian ships would at the most have mining lasers, etc).

Potentially this game could be used for realistically simulations. The game engine, if open source could be used for much more than simply for entertainment. A program such as this would have application purposes in the military, commercial enterprises, and even future space travel.

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